Update – I just learned that Toby passed away this morning. I had already complete today’s show when I found out. So I will leave it as it is.
Today most of the show is from an interview I originally did with Toby on April 14th, 2015. I was going to make it a rewind but under the circumstances chose to make it a new episode with all segments.
Quite a long time ago I talked to my friend Toby about working with PermaEthos, it resulted in the course we had him teach on small scale Permaculture called, Creating Gaia’s Garden. I am sad to say but those of you that took that course may be the last formal students Toby will ever teach.
You see in those discussions I learned he had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, and his prognosis was grim. Along the way he tried some alternative treatment that cause improvement enough to try conventional therapy. During this time he continued his work and taught our course.
But we knew that soon after it ended he was really struggling, then yesterday I got an email from Toby’s web guy, Kane Jamison, that said,
In October of 2015, Toby was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. He completed a course of chemotherapy at UCSF in San Francisco, but a CAT scan taken a couple months later indicated that the cancer had spread to his liver. He began a second course of chemotherapy in October 2016, which was interrupted when he developed septic shock in November.
Since then, additional scans show that the cancer has continued to spread in his liver. Toby signed up for home hospice on December 16, 2016.
Toby is no longer able to work, and his wife, Kiel, is his full-time caregiver. We are asking for support to help us meet expenses for living and caregiving.
We want to extend our deepest gratitude for all those who have already offered their prayers, time, food, and friendship. Thank you all. And please know that no offering is too small, and prayers and good wishes are so appreciated.
We have set up a page at YouCaring requesting donations and messages of support. You can click the link below to donate:
I first went to the page and made a donation and then shared it on facebook, and many others did as well. At that time about 800 dollars had been donated, today we are now up to about 30,000 dollars.
Folks hospice care generally means you have less than 6 months to live, some do come out of it, but most do not. And on top of that pancreatic and liver cancers have very low survival rates, the two together are even worse. So I and many others now face a reality that one of the best men to ever walk among us, may soon not be with us any longer.
So I have decided to do several things, today I will rebroadcast his interview on Liberation Permaculture, and during the break his show on The Permaculture City will be an episode of rewind.
I am asking all of you to consider donating to his fundraiser so that he can know that his wife will be okay once he is gone. I can tell you that if I were facing what he was, the one thing I would worry about most is my wife.
Here are the original show notes from the interview that will make up most of this show.
Toby Hemenway is the author of Gaia’s Garden: A Guide to Home-Scale Permaculture, which was awarded the Nautilus Gold Medal in 2011, was named by the Washington Post as one of the ten best gardening books of 2010, and for the last eight years has been the best-selling permaculture book in the world.
Toby has been an adjunct professor at Portland State University, Scholar-in-Residence at Pacific University, and has taught over sixty 72-hour permaculture design courses. He has presented lectures and workshops at major sustainability conferences such as Bioneers, SolFest, and EcoFarm, and at Duke University, Tufts University, University of Minnesota, University of Delaware and many other educational venues.
His writing has appeared in magazines such as Natural Home, Whole Earth Review, and American Gardener. He has contributed book chapters for WorldWatch Institute and to several publications on ecological design.
After obtaining a degree in biology from Tufts University, Toby worked for many years as a researcher in genetics and immunology, first in academic laboratories including Harvard and the University of Washington in Seattle, and then at Immunex, a major medical biotech company. At about the time he was growing dissatisfied with the direction biotechnology was taking, he discovered permaculture, a design approach based on ecological principles that creates sustainable landscapes, homes, and workplaces.
A career change followed, and Toby and his wife, Kiel (key-ell), spent ten years creating a rural permaculture site in southern Oregon. He was the editor of Permaculture Activist, a journal of ecological design and sustainable culture, from 1999 to 2004. He moved to Portland, Oregon in 2004, and spent six years developing urban sustainability resources there. Toby and his wife now live in Sebastopol, California.
Toby joins us today to discuss his emerging anarcho liberation view on permaculture. How permaculture decentralizes resources, compels critical thinking and has yields almost impossible to quantify and therefore tax. We discuss how the future of environmental sustainability and human freedom are largely linked and dependent upon one another.
Resources for today’s show…
- Join the Members Brigade
- The Year 1919
- Join Our Forum
- Walking To Freedom
- TSP Gear
- Pattern Literacy – Toby’s Website
- Gaia’s Garden – Toby’s First Book
- The Permaculture City – Toby’s Second Book
- Support Toby at YouCaring
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